Divine Hierarchies: Class in American Religion and Religious by Sean McCloud

By Sean McCloud

Putting the ignored factor of sophistication again into the learn and knowing of faith, Sean McCloud reconsiders the that means of sophistication in modern-day international. greater than a standing grounded in fabric stipulations, says McCloud, classification additionally involves relationships, identifications, barriers, meanings, strength, and our so much ingrained conduct of brain and physique. He demonstrates that utilising category as an analytical instrument that cuts throughout variables akin to creed, race, ethnicity, and gender can remove darkness from American non secular existence in extraordinary methods.

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Continuously references his working-class Irish background. ⁶⁰ But identification with a particular class can also be more conflicted, especially when one has crossed class boundaries. For example, the cultural studies scholar bell hooks writes of her experience as a rural, black, and working-class girl coming to class consciousness at an elite private college for women. ”⁶¹ Her first year in college exposed stark class differences between herself and other classmates. ”⁶³ While her perception of social differentiation in college drove her to more strongly identify with her working-class background, her academic credentials would statistically move hooks out of her earlier class position and lead to unease.

Their numbers seemed to signal America’s downfall due to inferior genes. But Huntington and Whitney espoused a Spencerian survival of the fittest evolutionism that declared the eventual triumph of the eugenic. Given this, cacogenic religions would disappear along with cacogenic people. While they mentioned the demise of Roman Catholicism, they were perhaps more evocative in predicting the death of Fundamentalism. ”³⁸ In other words, the authors envisioned scientifically backward and apparently grimy Fundamentalists succumbing to diseases brought on by their ignorance of modern hygiene.

Third, these writings frequently asserted that some modern religious practices and beliefs were inherently “primitive” but persisted among unevolved races and classes of people. Rural whites who participated in ecstatic religious revivals and the burgeoning Pentecostal movement garnered special attention from eugenicists and scholars who held this view. Their participation in supposedly “primitive” religious practices ostensibly contradicted early twentieth-century racist assumptions that white Anglo-Saxons were the most advanced race of humans.

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